RE: histofreeze

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From:"O'Brien, Sue" <>
To:Jim Ball <>, "'Histomail\\'" <>
Date:Fri, 28 May 1999 07:18:59 -0400
Content-Type:text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"

Jim, I agree wholeheartedly with Mike (from down under). For a number of
years now we have been routinely pre-trimming and icing all our blocks, with
the precautions (concerning fatty tissue) mentioned.  Not only does this
decrease cutting time (really!), but it also decreases the number of
disposable knife blades utilized. (Definite concerns in this age of cost
containment).  We place a wet paper towel on top of the ice first, and take
care to drain any excess water so that the tissues are on ice - not floating
in water.   In addition to our routine work, we do many (over 40) IHC's with
excellent results utilizing this method.  (:
Sue O'Brien, Histology Supervisor
Burdette Tomlin Memorial Hospital
Cape May Court House, NJ  08210
> ----------
> From: 	Histomail\[]
> Sent: 	Friday, May 28, 1999 3:56 AM
> To: 	Jim Ball
> Cc:
> Subject: 	Re: histofreeze
> Dear Jim,
> I can see no reason why anyone would stoop to using such sprays on blocks,
> although I do admit to doing such when I was young and inexperienced.
> Here's
> an old trick that works well, routinely pre-chill all block faces after
> trimming by placing them face down on a tray of wettened ice (prepared the
> previous day by filling a polystyrene tray with water to a depth of about
> 1-2cms and placing flat in the freezer overnight- we usually do about 6
> trays), soaking the block in this fasion for 10 mins or more not only
> reduces the temp. of the block on those days when it's 40C plus (our old
> lab
> had no airconditioning) about 104F and let you get a few good sections,
> but
> there is also a softening effect on the tissue esp. skin and cervix and if
> these are left for up tp 20-30 mins. these section very well indeed.
> Brittle
> tissues  which suffer greatly from overprocessing such as Liver, spleen,
> congested placenta, blood clot and bone marrow aspirate, also benefit and
> will not fall apart on your knife edge or show signs of shattering and
> fragmenting.
> The only tissues which do not benefit are solid Lipomas and other very
> fatty
> samples, these can be chilled if you wish by placing them face down on the
> embedding centre chill module instead.
> If you notice excessive swelling of the tissues then your schedule is not
> processing tissues properly either due to an inappropriate schedule or
> contamination of reagents by esp. water, this can often be offset by using
> a
> 50/50 xylene(or other)/alcohol at about station 7 followed by Alcohol
> Anhy.
> then your normal clearing cycle; this is especially useful if you have a
> widely varied sample run with everything from Trucuts to Slices of
> Mastectomy which might contain a lot of fat and may  otherwise impede
> proper
> dehydration.
> Just a thought, Mike (Downunder)
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jim Ball <>
> To: <>
> Date: Friday, 28 May 1999 10:32
> Subject: Fw: histofreeze
> >
> >-----Original Message-----
> >From: Jim Ball <>
> >To: <>
> >Date: Wednesday, May 19, 1999 8:10 PM
> >Subject: histofreeze
> >
> >
> >>Has there ever been any research done on how histo-freeze affects IHC
> >>prcedures, when it is sprayed directly on the face of a tissue block
> >>(embeded in wax) in order to obtain a section. I personally detest the
> >>stuff, but everyone in the deparment swears by the product. The only
> >>evidence That I have that it might be effecting the IHC procedures is
> that
> >>my S100 and HMB45 control block seemed to lose staining intensity the
> more
> >>times it was exposed to the spray. There is no way the powers to be will
> >>listen to any thing I say unless it comes from outside their little
> >>universe. My main concern is that weak reactive sites may be lost
> >completely
> >>by even short exposures to histo-freeze.
> >>
> >
> >
> >

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